Skip to main content

Full text of "Byzantine Churches In Constantinople"

See other formats

THE dating of the Constantinople churches is a problem of great difficulty,, and., in the absence of documentary evidence, we must often be contented with very indefinite suggestions. Many churches are known to have been founded at dates which are evidently earlier than the existing buildings, and have apparently been rebuilt at some later date of which the record has been lost. Other churches are known to have been c repaired/ and here the question of how far * repair ' means c rebuilding' is sometimes insoluble. Repair may mean simply a fresh coat of paint.
The architectural characteristics afford a certain clue, and the following chronological scheme has been drawn up by their guidance :—
The pre-Justinian period is characterised by simple construction and detail of a late Roman type. Of this we have one example—the basilica of S. John of the Studion, founded about 463. The existing building appears to be original.
The Justinian period commences with the beginning of the sixth century. It is characterised by the development of the drumless dome on pendentives. The plan is complicated,, and the buildings are large in comparison with those of later date. To this period belong SS. Sergius and Bacchus (527 A.D.), the baptistery of S, Sophia, and c the Great Church' of S, Sophia itself. S. Andrew in Krisei and S. Saviour, in the Chora probably date from this period. The carved detail of the former closely resembles that of